Apple Butter and Cinnamon

It might not be fall yet, but it's never too early to start testing out some great fall treats.  One of my favorite things about fall is apple season.  Last year, my husband and I went to an orchard and had a great time picking apples and eating apple treats!  I much prefer apple to pumpkin, so to me fall is all about caramel apples and Starbucks caramel apple cider. Sure you can get these other times of the year, but there's something about the crisp autumn air that makes me crave apples!

One of my husband and my favorite apple treats is of course apple butter.  I think I could eat Cracker Barrel's apple butter out of the bowl with a spoon.  :)  It is that good.  A couple months ago, I saw a vanilla with apple butter cupcake on Pinterest.  Its captioned said "It tastes like fall."  That's all I needed to see, I was sold!

I like to mix and match ideas and recipes, so I decided to use my new favorite vanilla cake recipe in place of the one they give.  I also switched out the icing. The original recipe, found at Bake it in a Cake, called for a vanilla buttercream icing sprinkled in cinnamon and topped with a toasted pecan.  I decided to alter that and use my cinnamon buttercream recipe.  The combination of apple butter and the rich cinnamon buttercream seemed like a perfect fall combo.

These cupcakes are a definite treat!  They are pretty simple to make as well.

Apple Butter Cupcake Ingredients (yields approx 24):

  • Ingredients for your favorite vanilla cupcake recipe
  • Apple Butter
Apple Butter Cupcake Directions:
  1. Start by preparing your favorite vanilla cupcake batter.  If you don't have a favorite recipe, see my post, "A Taste of NYC" for a recipe (leaving out the cannoli cream).  Or you can try the vanilla cake recipe from Bake in a Cake.
  2. Fill the cupcake liners about 1/2 full of the batter - foil wrappers are definitely the best bet for even and consistent baking.
  3. Scoop a regular sized spoon amount of apple butter onto the top of the cupcake.  If your spoon touches the cake batter and then the apple butter jar, it can be contaminated.  I was very careful not to mix the two, but am still using the jar for cupcake filling only.  I don't want to risk salmonella!
  4. Finish filling the wrappers with a small amount of cupcake batter to make it about 3/4 full. You want to cover the apple butter.  The apple butter will sink while cooking, so you want it to be near the top to start out.
Cinnamon Buttercream Ingredients:
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 3-4 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Cinnamon Buttercream Directions:
  1. Beat butter until light and fluffy.
  2. Add in powdered sugar about 1/2 cup at a time. Mix in sugar completely before adding additional sugar.
  3. Mix in 3-4 tablespoons of milk.  The icing should have a firm, but not real stiff consistency.
  4. Add in vanilla and cinnamon and mix well.
To complete my cupcakes, I piped on the icing using the Wilton 1M tip.  I just did a spiral starting with the outer edges and working in.

Hope you try them out and share these fall treats with your friends and family!  If you are interested in more apple goodies, check out my post from a couple months ago, Apple Treats.  I previously blogged about apple pie and apple pie cupcakes with a caramel buttercream!  

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